Phil Mickelson Tried To Bet on Own Ryder Cup, Wagered Over $1 Billion, Says Gambling Partner Billy Walters

Phil Mickelson Tried To Bet on Own Ryder Cup, Wagered Over $1 Billion, Says Gambling Partner Billy Walters article feature image

Pictured: Phil Mickelson. (Photo by Eakin Howard/Getty Images)

More than one billion dollars.

That's how much Phil Mickelson gambled on sports over the last three decades, with losses nearing $100 million, according to Billy Walters — one of the world's most successful gamblers of all-time.

The tidbits come from Walters' new tell-all autobiography, "Gambler: Secrets from a Life at Risk," which will be released later this month by Simon & Schuster imprint Avid Reader Press.

From 2010 to 2014, Walters said he had a gambling partnership with Lefty. Mickelson benefited from Walters' legendary betting system, which earned him hundreds of millions of dollars over his career. Meanwhile, Walters benefited from the fact that Mickelson — a gambling amateur and a famous name — had far, far higher limits. They split profits 50-50, Walters writes.

For instance, Mickelson could get $400,000 down on each college football and NFL game with offshore books, which was 10 to 20 times what Walters could bet per game, the gambler says in his book.

Walters kept a record on Mickelson's gambling exploits, which he shared in the book. An excerpt published Thursday by Fire Pit Collective included the following details:

In September 2012, Mickelson allegedly called Walters to ask if he would place a $400,000 bet because he was tied up at the Ryder Cup, competing for the American team. The wager? On the American team to win the Ryder Cup.

Walters angrily refused. "Have you lost your fucking mind?" Walters allegedly told Mickelson. "Don't you remember what happened to Pete Rose?"

Walters said he never found out if Mickelson ever got the action. In the end, the U.S. team was up big before the Europeans staged what is widely regarded as the greatest comeback in Ryder Cup history.

For what it's worth, Mickelson said in a statement on Twitter on Thursday that he "never bet on the Ryder Cup."

"While it is well known that I always enjoy a friendly wager on the course, I would never undermine the integrity of the game," Mickelson said. "I have also been very open about my gambling addiction. I have previously conveyed my remorse, took responsibility, have gotten help [and] have been fully committed to therapy that has positively impacted me and I feel good about where I am now."

Mickelson bet $110,000 to win $100,000 a total of 1,115 times and $220,000 to win $200,000 on 858 bets. The sum of those wagers alone, Walters wrote, came to $311 million.

In 2011, Walters' data showed that Mickelson averaged nearly nine bets a day, but on one day that year (June 22), he placed 43 bets on Major League Baseball games, ending the night with a $143,500 loss.

"The only person I know who surpassed that type of volume is me," Walters wrote.

Mickelson's partnership with Walters ended in 2014 when the two were being investigated by the FBI and the SEC for alleged insider trading of Dean Foods stock. Mickelson paid back nearly $1 million and did not face any further discipline. Meanwhile, Walters was convicted and sentenced to five years in jail.

The Action Network reached out to a spokesman from SPORTFIVE, which represents Mickelson. They did not return an email and call for comment.

"Phil Mickelson, one of the most famous people in the world and a man I once considered a friend, refused to tell a simple truth that he shared with the FBI and could have kept me out of prison," Walters wrote. "I never told him inside information about stocks and he knows it. All Phil had to do was publicly say it. He refused."

In December 2021, former President Donald Trump pardoned Walters.

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